Since the Hamas massacre of Israeli civilians on Oct. 7, ADL (the Anti-Defamation League) has recorded a significant spike in antisemitic incidents across the United States. Preliminary data from ADL Center on Extremism indicates that reported incidents of harassment, vandalism and assault increased by 388 percent over the same period last year.
ADL recorded a total of 312 antisemitic incidents between Oct. 7-23, 2023, 190 of which were directly linked to the war in Israel and Gaza. By comparison, during the same period in 2022, ADL received preliminary reports of 64 incidents, including four that were Israel-related. An interactive map plotting where incidents have occurred in October 2023 can be found here.
ADL also tracked anti-Israel rallies since Oct. 7, at least 109 of which ADL found explicit or strong implicit support for Hamas and/or violence against Jews in Israel. These 109 are included in ADL’s tally of antisemitic incidents.
“When conflict erupts in Israel, antisemitic incidents soon follow in the U.S. and globally,” said Jonathan Greenblatt, ADL CEO. “From white supremacists in California displaying antisemitic banners on highway overpasses to radical anti-Zionists harassing Jewish people because of their real or perceived support for the Jewish state, we are witnessing a disturbing rise in antisemitic activity here while the war rages overseas.”
Here is a sampling of incidents reported across the country:
- On Oct. 8 in Clifton, NJ: A car with individuals holding Palestinian flags appeared to intentionally swerve out of its lane, nearly hitting a visibly Jewish family.
- On Oct. 9 in Detroit, MI: A Jewish student was harassed, shoved and called “****** Zionist” while painting a free speech rock with an Israeli flag on the campus of Wayne State University.
- On Oct. 10 in Los Angeles, CA: An individual shouted “I am Hamas” and made death threats to Jewish individuals standing by a Kosher restaurant.
- On Oct. 12 in Indianapolis, IN: A man carrying an Israeli flag was allegedly assaulted by a pro-Palestinian protestor.
- On Oct. 15 in New York, NY: An individual allegedly punched a Jewish woman in the face at Grand Central Terminal. When she asked why, he responded: “You are Jewish.”
- On Oct. 15 in Walnut Creek, CA: White Lives Matter California, a white supremacist group, held a rally on a highway overpass and displayed signs stating: “Save Gaza,” “No More Wars for I$rael” and “Watch Europa the Last Battle.”
- On Oct. 18 in New York, NY: A group of Israeli individuals were harassed and at least one assaulted by a pro-Palestinian protestor in Times Square.
ADL also recorded a nearly 1,000-percent increase in the daily average of violent messages mentioning Jews and Israel in white supremacist and right-wing extremist channels on the messaging platform Telegram in the days following the massacre in Israel.
“It is incumbent on all leaders, from political leaders to CEOs to university presidents, to forcefully and unequivocally condemn antisemitism and terrorism,” said Greenblatt. “This isn’t hard. Words matter, and while the war in Gaza escalates, we encourage all those in positions of power to use their platforms to condemn hate and terrorism, wherever it occurs.”
The rise in antisemitic incidents has not been limited to the U.S. In France, the Minister of Interior announced on Monday that 588 antisemitic incidents had been reported to police, resulting in 336 arrests. In the UK, London police said that there were 218 antisemitic hate crimes reported from October 1-18, over 13 times greater than the same period last year. In Germany, antisemitism monitoring organization RIAS reported a 240-percent increase in antisemitic incidents since Oct 7, compared to the same time period last year. There have also been antisemitic incidents in other countries in Europe, as well as in Latin America, North Africa, Australia and elsewhere.
In light of these alarming trends, ADL is calling on governments, political leaders and those in positions of influence around the world to:
- Continue to condemn antisemitism, both in principle and in reaction to antisemitic incidents.
- Secure and support Jewish communities and their institutions.
- Prosecute perpetrators of antisemitic incidents to the full extent of the law.